Destroy the files | Destruction of official records in government offices

Is there any provision that officially we can destroy/remove the old files in Central Government office like 10 years/15 years old files?

Is there any provision or any related information, kindly give the rules for it.


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Refer Records Management in Manual of Office Procedure

52. Record Retention Schedule -

To ensure that files etc. are neither prematurely destroyed, nor kept for periods longer than necessary, every Ministry/Department will:

(a) in respect of records connected with accounts, observe the instructions contained in Appendix 13 to the General Financial Rules as available in the website of the Ministry of Finance, Department of Expenditure (;

(b) in respect of records, relating to establishment, personnel and housekeeping matters common to all departments, follow the ā€˜Record Retention Scheduleā€™ in respect of Records Common to All Ministries/Departmentsā€™, which is available on Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievancesā€™ website, as amended from time to time.

(c ) in respect of records connected with its substantive functions, issue a departmental retention schedule prescribing the periods for which files files dealing with specified subjects shall be preserved, in consultation with the NAI.

VIII. MAINTENANCE OF RECORDS (General Financial Rules, 2017)

Rule 320 (1) Destruction of Records. Subject to any general or special rules or orders applicable to particular departments as prescribed in their departmental manuals, no Government record connected with accounts shall be destroyed except in accordance with the provisions of Appendix -9.

Rule 320 (2) All the records prescribed for retention in Appendix - 9, if maintained in electronic form should mandatorily have a back up and adhere strictly to the retention period and the prescribed formats. The responsibility for verification and certification on a monthly/annual basis as prescribed under relevant rules should also be ensured.

Destruction of Office Records GFR.pdf (911.3 KB)

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ISTM Record Management material

RecordManagement.pdf (3.7 MB)